Matt Vespa - D’oh! Bernie Sanders’ Climate Change Agenda Would Actually Increase Carbon Emissions ‘Dramatically’
Posted: 4/29/2016 1:45:00 PM EST

Sen. Bernie Sanders is a green warrior. That much is clear, but his environmental agenda would be an absolute disaster…for those in the climate change camp. For starters, he wants to tackle natural gas and nuclear power. Nuclear power is responsible for 20 percent of America’s energy. Remove that from the equation with no equitable alternative that could meet the former’s energy needs, and you have to resort to resources that already have an extensive infrastructure. That would be coal—the boogeyman of the environmental left. Foreign Policy delved into Sanders’ paradoxical energy policy and how it has been applied elsewhere in the world, which experienced the same results: higher carbon emissions.

Wouldn’t those proposals drive the country back to coal and oil, and actually undermine your fight against global warming?” Errol Louis, one of the debate moderators, asked Sanders during Thursday’s [April 14] debate in Brooklyn, New York.

“No, they wouldn’t,” Sanders shot back. He called for a massive increase in the use of renewable energy, especially solar power, and said that if the United States took the climate threat as seriously as it did the Nazis in World War II, the country could in a few years radically transform its entire energy system.

[…]

Third Way crunched the numbers and found that getting rid of nuclear power means U.S. carbon emissions would “go up dramatically,” and in the worst-case scenario, could “wipe out a decade’s worth of progress” and return U.S. carbon emissions to levels last seen in 2005. That’s because retired nuclear plants would almost always be replaced by natural gas or coal. Freed said that when the Vermont Yankee nuclear plant was shuttered in 2014, the electricity shortfall was largely made up by burning more coal.

It’s a question that bedevils countries around the world. Germany is phasing out nuclear power as part of its ambitious energy transition, and is betting it can power one of the world’s biggest economies largely with renewable energy. But Germany’s greenhouse-gas emissions rose in the years after the phaseout was reaffirmed in 2011.

Japan shut down all of its nuclear plants after the 2011 meltdown at Fukushima. What made up the electricity shortfall? Crude oil, natural gas, and coal, which together make it a lot harder for Japan to reach its emissions targets.

So, in some odd way, if you’re a coal worker, you might want to Sanders to beat Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination and go on to win in the general because coal is the only alternative if President Bernie decides to axe natural gas and nuclear power. At the same time, the fact that coal and crude oil would be the only secondary protocols to make up for the energy shortfalls due to Sanders’ uber-left green agenda shows how inefficient alternative energy truly is–and why the country should focus on the energy resources, where the United States is (in some sectors) unrivaled in terms of supply. That would be coal, oil, and natural gas. This country is built on those three energy resources, and coal is burning cleaner than ever before. Maybe that’s why it’s looked to, as the future for our energy needs since the world is packed with it (via Wired):

Nowhere is the preeminence of coal more apparent than in the planet’s fastest-growing, most populous region: Asia, especially China. In the past few decades, China has lifted several hundred million people out of destitution—arguably history’s biggest, fastest rise in human well-being. That advance couldn’t have happened without industrialization, and that industrialization couldn’t have happened without coal. More than three-quarters of China’s electricity comes from coal, including the power for the giant electronic plants where iPhones are assembled. More coal goes to heating millions of homes, to smelting steel (China produces nearly half the world’s steel), and to baking limestone to make cement (China provides almost half the world’s cement). In its frantic quest to develop, China burns almost as much coal as the rest of the world put together—a fact that makes climatologists shudder.

[…]

GreenGen is one of the world’s most advanced attempts to develop a technology known as carbon capture and storage. Conceptually speaking, CCS is simple: Industries burn just as much coal as before but remove all the pollutants. In addition to scrubbing out ash and soot, now standard practice at many big plants, they separate out the carbon dioxide and pump it underground, where it can be stored for thousands of years.

Many energy and climate researchers believe that CCS is vital to avoiding a climate catastrophe. Because it could allow the globe to keep burning its most abundant fuel source while drastically reducing carbon dioxide and soot, it may be more important—though much less publicized—than any renewable-energy technology for decades to come. No less than Steven Chu, the Nobel-winning physicist who was US secretary of energy until last year, has declared CCS essential. “I don’t see how we go forward without it,” he says.

 Long live coal, Bernie.

Christine Rousselle - Will Ferrell Pulls Out of Movie That Mocked Reagan's Dementia
Posted: 4/29/2016 1:45:00 PM EST

Actor Will Ferrell has pulled out of a controversial movie that would have mocked President Reagan's battle with dementia. The plot of the movie involved a White House intern convincing President Ronald Reagan that he was an actor playing the role of the president of the United States.

The real President Reagan died of Alzheimer's disease in 2004.

From Page Six:

The 48-year-old comic confirmed Friday that while he had seen the script and considered signing on to star and produce “Reagan”, he was no longer going ahead with the project.

A spokesperson for Will said, “The REAGAN script is one of a number of scripts that had been submitted to Will Ferrell which he had considered. While it is by no means a ‘Alzheimer’s comedy’ as has been suggested, Mr. Ferrell is not pursuing this project.”

Entertainment industry bible Variety reported on Wednesday that Ferrell was attached to star as President Reagan in the comedy, which begins at the start of the president’s second term when he begins suffering from dementia. An intern is tasked with convincing the commander-in-chief that he is an actor playing the president in a movie. Ferrell was also set to produce the political comedy, they added.

Good. A real-life person's struggle with Alzheimer's disease is nothing to laugh at. Ferrell is a talented actor and it'd be a shame to see him stoop to something this low.

Christine Rousselle - Trump: I'm Not Opposed to Nuking ISIS
Posted: 4/29/2016 1:15:00 PM EST

On the "Today" show on Thursday, Donald Trump said that despite the fact that he found nuclear weapons to be abhorrent, he wouldn't rule out using them against ISIS.

“I don’t want to rule out anything,” he said Thursday on NBC’s “Today.” Trump noted he doesn't want to use nuclear weapons, calling them "a horror."

“The power of weaponry today is the single greatest problem that our world has, and it’s not global warming like our president said, it’s the power of weapons — in particular, nuclear," he said.

“I will be the last to use it. I will not be a happy trigger like some people might be, but I will never, ever rule it out.”

Also on Thursday, basketball coach Bobby Knight boasted that Trump would "drop the A-bomb like Truman."

Matt Vespa - Reciprocity: Kansas Concealed Carry Permits Now Recognized In New Hampshire
Posted: 4/29/2016 12:57:00 PM EST

To the 91,000-plus concealed carry holders living in Kansas, there’s some good news coming out of New Hampshire–your permit will now be recognized in the Granite State (via KSN):

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt said in a news release New Hampshire has notified the Kansas Attorney General’s office that Kansas-issued licenses are now recognized in that state. This brings to 37 the number of states other than Kansas that recognize Kansas licenses.

Since 2013, Kansas has recognized all valid out-of-state permits when the non-resident license holder is traveling temporarily in Kansas. As a result of this, many states that require their licenses to be recognized in Kansas before reciprocally recognizing Kansas licenses have now done so, Schmidt said.

Not exactly an earth-shattering development concerning Second Amendment rights, especially with the Newtown lawsuit that’s to be heard in 2018, but any step towards expanding that right is good news.

Christine Rousselle - The Obamas And The British Royal Family Are Having a Delightful Trash-Talking Session On Twitter
Posted: 4/29/2016 12:35:00 PM EST

The Invictus Games will be hosted in Orlando, Fl. from May 8 through the 12, and feature athletic competition between wounded military personnel. The first Invictus games were held in the U.K. in 2014. Ahead of the games, the Obamas and the British Royal Family have gotten into a bit of a friendly trash-talk exchange on Twitter, and it's quite delightful.

The Obamas struck first:

Which took Prince Harry, via the Kensington Palace Twitter account, a bit by surprise:

...who then eventually clapped back with this:

"Boom" indeed.

A clever and sweet way to promote a great cause.

The 2017 Invictus Games will be hosted in Canada.

Justin Holcomb  - Alabama 11-Year Old Shoots Home Thief, "He Started Crying Like a Little Baby"
Posted: 4/29/2016 12:30:00 PM EST

Chris Gaither, 11, was alone Wednesday morning in his Alabama home when a would-be burglar decided to enter and steal from the house.

Gaither said he was scared, but quickly realized that there was an imminent threat and grabbed a nine-millimeter hand gun.

“I told him I was going to kill him if he didn’t get out of my house,” Gaither said.

“When he was coming down the stairs, that’s when he told me he was going to kill me, f-you and all that,” Gaither added.

The intruder was on he was out of the home with stolen goods when Gaither opened fire.  

"I shot through a hamper that he was carrying.  It was a full metal jacket bullet. It went straight through the back of his leg. He started crying like a little baby,” he said.

“I hope you learn your lesson coming to this house trying to steal stuff,” Gaither said.

The thief certainly did learn a lesson.  He simply wasn't on Chris's level.

Matt Vespa - GOP Hits Lowest Approval Rating Since 1992
Posted: 4/29/2016 11:40:00 AM EST

For Republicans, especially anti-Trump Republicans, this year has been sort of a catastrophe. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), the darling of the Tea Party wing, is trailing billionaire real estate mogul Donald Trump. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, and former Texas Gov. Rick Perry–all admired within conservative circles, have been steamrolled by Trump. After eight miserable years of President Obama, this was suppose to be an election where the GOP’s deep bench would shine against an aging Hillary Clinton, whose reputation has been further brought into question due to allegations of corruption, cronyism, and the mishandling of classified information. Instead, we have Donald Trump, who is most likely to lead the Republican Party at the top of the ticket come November. So, with the “Never Trump” crowd doing its best to knock Trump off the nominating pedestal, disgruntled conservatives within the Republican Party, and the overall anger directed towards Washington—it’s no surprise that the GOP’s approval ratings have hit its lowest point since 1992 (via Pew Research):

The Republican Party’s image, already quite negative, has slipped since last fall. Currently 33% of the public has a favorable impression of the Republican Party, while 62% have an unfavorable view. Unfavorable opinions of the GOP are now as high as at any point since 1992.

In October, 37% viewed the Republican Party favorably and 58% viewed it unfavorably. The decline in favorability since then has largely come among Republicans themselves: In the current survey, 68% of Republicans view their party positively, down from 79% last fall.

Republicans have less favorable view of the GOP. By contrast, public views of the Democratic Party are unchanged since October. Currently, 45% of the public has a favorable impression of the Democratic Party, while 50% have an unfavorable opinion.

I guess the silver lining is that Democrats aren’t fairing much better.

Justin Holcomb  - California Lawmakers Reject John Wayne Day, Disturbed By His Views On Race
Posted: 4/29/2016 11:10:00 AM EST

Plans to declare May 26th as John Wayne Day in California have been rejected by the State Assembly over "disturbing views towards race".

Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez cited an interview where Wayne defended white Europeans' encroachment on Native American land.

"Our so-called stealing of this country from them was just a matter of survival. There were great numbers of people who needed new land, and the Indians were selfishly trying to keep it for themselves," the actor said.

Wayne's support for the anti-communist House Un-American Activities Committee and the far right John Birch Society were also brought up.

Assemblyman Matthew Harper, R-Huntington Beach, sought to declare May 26, 2016, as John Wayne Day to mark the day the actor was born. 

"Opposing the John Wayne Day resolution is like opposing apple pie, fireworks, baseball, the Free Enterprise system and the Fourth of July!" he said in a written statement.

"He stood for those big American values that we know and we love," said Assemblyman Travis Allen, R-Huntington Beach.

"Every one of us is imperfect," another Assemblyman said.

Wayne was always known for not being afraid to speak his opinion.  From an interview years ago, Wayne said, "This so-called new liberal group, Jesus, they never listen to your point of view.  And they make a decision as to what you think."

Guy Benson - Lewandowski: Trump's Gonna Put Massachusetts in Play, You Guys
Posted: 4/29/2016 10:35:00 AM EST

No, he won't. But we'll humor you anyway. Go ahead, Corey:


I reacted to this on twitter by chuckling that those must be some powerful drugs he's taking, to which Trump's relentless online mob primarily responded in two ways: First, they furiously accused me of literally accusing Trump's campaign manager of drug use, evincing both profound humorlessness and a devotion to politically-correct "safe spaces." I did not apologize for "triggering" any of the precious snowflakes who pretend to love un-PC insults -- unless and until they're directed at Mister Trump. In which case, they melt down. Second, I was predictably and repeatedly informed that 'TRUMP won Massachusetts in a blowout!' This is true. Trump crushed his opponents in the Bay State's Republican primary, narrowly missing an outright majority amid a much more crowded field at the time. But Massachusetts is Massachusetts. Hillary Clinton won the Democratic primary on the same night. Her raw vote totals in that race surpassed the top three Republicans' support combined.  So did Bernie Sanders, incidentally, who came in second place.  And since I've been preaching that -- altogether now -- primary turnout doesn't predict general election outcomes, let's layer in a more compelling piece of evidence that Lewandowski's assertion is pure fantasy:


When reason is abandoned, wish-casting and visceral emotions take charge. That's what leads people to vigorously nod along as Team Trump makes tremendous predictions of coming glory, believe them. Piggybacking off of Lewandowski's delusions, the candidate reiterated to an Indiana audience today that he'll have a good chance to win New York State in November.  Over the last nine polls, Trump has trailed Hillary Clinton by roughly 20 points in the Empire State, breaking 40 percent support in exactly zero of them. As Trump & Co. appeal to blind faith about his capacity to "expand the map," actual polling data reveals that Mrs. Clinton is competitive in the reliably Republican states of ArizonaMississippi and Utah.  One team's map is likely to expand in the fall, just not Trump's.  I'll leave you with my analysis of the delegate chase -- which Trump fans will probably enjoy -- as well as new Trumpstablishment hero John Boehner's 'Lucifer' remarks:



Matt Vespa - ‘Bomb’ Suspect Who Threatened Fox45 Baltimore Building Suffered ‘Mental Breakdown,’ Says Father
Posted: 4/29/2016 9:18:00 AM EST

Editor’s Note: The original post said the thumb drive contained information relating to astrology–it’s really astronomy. I apologize for the mix up. The post has been corrected.


The man who threatened to blow up the Fox45 building in Baltimore yesterday suffered a mental breakdown, according to his father. The suspect dressed in a badger suit and entered the building, saying he possessed a thumb drive with information related to the Panama Papers. The Papers detailed how the uber-wealthy utilized offshore tax havens. When the suspect, described as a 25-year-old male, arrived at the Fox45 building, he wanted to get this information on air. The news director at the station refused, but told the badger suit man that he could leave the thumb drive with him. The suspect refused to do that. He then threatened to blow up the building.

The building was evacuated when the suspect set his car on fire prior to entering the building with his thumb drive. He conversed with a security guard for about 45 minutes, where the guard said he was angry with the government. We now know that anger was directed at government space policy, and that the thumb drive didn’t have anything earth-shattering—just some information about the sun, black holes, and other areas of astronomy.

A Baltimore Police sniper shot the suspect, who refused to take his hands out of his pockets and stop upon being ordered by police. With the suspected bomb still strapped to his chest, a robot was sent in to try to get the suspect to show his hands and comply again with police orders. He eventually showed his hands, and the suspect bomb, a combination of wires, tin foil, and candy bars wrapped around a motherboard, was removed from the scene. The suspect was taken to a nearby hospital.

Fox Baltimore’s Shelley Orman, Joy Lepola, Karen Campbell, Amber Miller, and the rest of the news team gave on the ground reports of this bizarre incident. Lepola interviewed the alleged suspect’s father, who said his son had suffered a mental breakdown. It was also confirmed that the suspect was not wearing a panda suit; it was a badger.

Via Fox Baltimore:

The 25-year-old suspect, who investigators identified as a white male from Howard County, was shot by police after forcing an evacuation of the WBFF-TV news station in north Baltimore with a bomb threat.

The man set his car on fire in the station's parking lot before demanding the station air a story he brought with him on a flash drive. Police couldn't confirm the contents of the flash drive, although the station's security guard said it had to do with government conspiracies.

The man, whose name wasn't released Thursday, then threatened to blow up the building after being denied entry to the station's lobby. The man was wearing a surgical mask, sunglasses and what police described as a "panda outfit onesie" with a hood and a red vest-like device underneath. The building was evacuated after it was believed the device was actually a bomb.

[…]

A team of firefighters extinguished the flames coming out of the suspect's sedan's gas tank, while officers blocked off the street before sending in a negotiator.

The man walked outside and was followed by at least four officers in tactical gear. Baltimore police spokesman T.J. Smith said the man had his hands in his pockets with a wire leading down his arm from the red device strapped to his chest.

Smith said the man refused to follow the officers' orders to stop and take his hands out of his pockets.

"When you have a non-compliant individual, you have to do what you have to do," Smith said.

A Baltimore police counter sniper fired and struck the man, who went down in the middle of West 41st Street. Several shots were fired, although Smith couldn't confirm exactly how many.

[…]

Several minutes passed and the man was still lying in the middle of the street after being shot. Medics could not tend to his injuries because he refused to take his hands out of his pockets.

"He was described as conscious and alert, just uncooperative," Smith said. "He was saying no when we were asking him to comply."

Eventually, the man complied to police orders and the robot disarmed him of his vest.

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